Wednesday, June 24, 2015

How Vox blends news interpretation and journalism with "sponsored content", a controversy?

CNN Money has an interesting article from December 2014 explaining how Vox Media works as a business, here.  It refers to a Linked-In post by Vox here. 
The company has long had various niche news websites and more recently launched its main news site, simply called Vox, around the end of 2013.  It is like a digital news network without a cable channel corresponding to, say, CNN, with a progressive to liberal political view.  But its emphasis has been more on interpreting the news than on breaking it.  For many issues, it has developed yellow “card stacks”, which are now sometimes embeddable, which discuss all the aspects of a specific issue (like same-sex marriage) often showing there are multiple viewpoints, not just two “opposing viewpoints”.  For some issues, it issues “Vox sentences” to summarize what is known at a particular point.  It’s approach to breaking news is restrained, a “what we know” presentation.

That’s why a CNN article that says that Vox partners with some key advertisers to create detailed content is interesting and maybe perplexing.  (“Native advertising” is denied;  “sponsored content” is another buzzword.)   That could sound like it could blur the lines of “objective” journalism – but the again, can “interpretation” every be totally objective.

Pando convers the issue here:

I wonder if my “do ask do tell” concept could fit in to the whole picture.

I'll show an example of an embedded card-stack, on global warming, in conjunction with the Pope's recent comments on climate change.

I note one other matter from my own perspective as to how I got into blogger journalism.  The employees and editors have their own twitter feeds, and seem free to express their own views.  In the past, according to “conflict of interest” concerns I raised about my own situation (back in the 90s) covering gays in the military while working for a company that served them, that might have seemed questionable.

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